Motherhood Nigeria has gone in a search to showcase another great Nigerian mum doing amazing in her business to be featured in our Mumpreneur series this season. we are determined to inspire, motivate an encourage with success stories of Nigerian mums who are raising children and building businesses.
We are honoured to present to you the Creative director of Oak and Teak Interiors, Mrs Morenike Molehin:
Morenike is a multi-dimensional young woman, the CEO and Creative Director of Oak &Teak, a fast-rising interior, and furniture manufacturing company.
She is also the Managing Director of an Agro-allied company. Morenike obtained a first degree in industrial mathematics from Covenant University and a second degree in Financial Mathematics and Computation from the University of Leicester United Kingdom.
Renny as popularly called is a first-class female-entrepreneur, who has mastered the art of creativity and turning it into wealth. She is the convener of ‘The complete Woman Conference’ and Host of ‘Design through His eyes’
WHAT INSPIRE YOU TO START THIS BUSINESS?
- MORENIKE MOLEHIN: while growing up, my mum was an interior addict. She would always re-arrange the house, add or remove accessories at least every 2 weeks. Unknown to me she was depositing seeds of becoming an interior designer. Every time I entered a space, I realized I was either very happy or suddenly become moody just by how space looked. I got married and decorated my house. Everyone that came to my house loved and complimented how our house looked. My husband, who is my greatest fan and supporter then began to advise me to start but I didn’t think it was a good idea at the time. Later I began to see the need for everyone to live in a beautiful space and how important it was. I know that not everyone can be my client but I would want to be able to contribute my quota to seeing as many people as possible living in comfortable living spaces. My mum inspired my love for beautiful spaces, while my husband inspired me to start the business.
FROM HAVING AN IDEA TO STARTING YOUR BUSINESS, SHARE YOUR JOURNEY WITH US?
- MORENIKE MOLEHIN: Fuuny enough, immediately I knew I wanted to do this business, I took action. The first action was to look for a name that would resonate with the business I will go into. Immediately that was sorted, I went to register my business at the Corporate Affairs Commission. It wasn’t as difficult as I assumed. I did all the required registrations myself and was ready to start taking orders. I wanted my business to be professional from the beginning. So even if you wanted to pay me N1,000, it would be paid into the company account. After all this, I contacted a friend to help put up a baby Nursery I took professional photos of and put it up on BellaNaija (it came with a price) and from there the business started. I will say taking the bold step really worked for me. I wasn’t afraid to try and I was advantaged because of social media. I just knew it would turn out fine. Here I am 3 and a half years after and I am grateful for taking that step.
GREAT IDEAS DON’T ALWAYS MEAN GREAT SALES, HOW HAS IT BEEN MARKETING YOUR SERVICES?
- MORENIKE MOLEHIN: Marketing my services have been soo easy. We make sure we do an excellent job, so that speaks for itself and I get lots of referrals. We also use social media to market the jobs we do and thankfully, our line of business is very visual so people love to see the transformations. That has helped a lot.
WHY DO YOU LOVE WHAT YOU DO? THERE ARE SO MANY OTHER BUSINESSES YOU COULD HAVE EXPLORED, WHY THIS BUSINESS?
- MORENIKE MOLEHIN : I chose this business fundamentally because I like to see people living in comfortable spaces. I am convinced that the environment where we live in an important role to play in how we feel. A good looking environment plays a role in improving our emotion and attitude. For instance, it is believed that employees who work in a well-decorated space tend to work more productively. Therefore, it is my desire to help improve the feelings and emotions of our clients through our work.
DID YOU DISCOVER NEW THINGS ABOUT YOURSELF IN THE COURSE OF STARTING AND RUNNING YOUR BUSINESS?
- MORENIKE MOLEHIN: Yes definitely. Doing business has stretched me, it has brought out some skills I thought never existed.
HOW DID YOU RAISE THE CAPITAL TO START YOUR BUSINESS?
- MORENIKE MOLEHIN: I didn’t require any capital to start the business. All I needed was the passion, the knowledge and the trust of someone to give me their money to transform their space.
WHEN YOU STARTED THIS BUSINESS, DO YOU ENJOY SUPPORT FROM OTHER FEMALES?
- MORENIKE MOLEHIN: Ohh yes, I have enjoyed support from Women.
HOW ARE YOU BEING ABLE TO TRANSLATE FROM PAID EMPLOYMENT TO STARTING YOUR OWN BUSINESS?
- MORENIKE MOLEHIN: I was still in Paid employment when I started the business because I wanted to learn discipline, time management, people management and general ethics of business. As I began to get lots of jobs from my “side hustle” I knew it was time to start preparing my exit. It was quite emotional but it was something I had to do because of the bigger picture.
WHAT IS THE ROLE OF HAVING A MENTOR IN BUSINESS SUCCESS STORIES?
- MORENIKE MOLEHIN: Having the right mentor is important because they show you how to get to a target faster and what not to do… basically learning from their experience to avoid some mistakes. They also guide you and give you lots of networking opportunities as well as business opportunities.
WHAT ARE THE CHALLENGES YOU FACED AS A YOUNG BUSINESS WOMAN AND MOTHER?
- MORENIKE MOLEHIN: I will address this from an angle of being a wife and mom. Having to juggle family with business is not so easy. Having to drop off my daughter in school in the morning, attend to staff and clients in the afternoon and arrange family dinner at night is not always as straight forward as A B C. This is why I am a big advocate of having a great support system. I am grateful that I have world-class support made up of an understanding husband, an intelligent staff, family, and friends. Trust me, every woman in business needs a solid support system. One of my major challenges will be liaising with artisans. I have come to realize that interacting with them isn’t as easy as I would have thought. For instance, some artisans do not keep to schedule even when they are very competitive while others pay little or no attention to details. Putting up with this has been a major challenge and I have discovered that when the people side of a business is right, manner other things fall into place. There are very few technical schools and people are not willing and patient enough to learn from these technical schools. Nevertheless, it has been my passion and the passion of my “core-team” that has kept us going. Despite the instances of disappointments from artisans, resulting in hitches and some behind the scene drama, I still derive so much satisfaction when I see a client’s project finally coming together beautifully. When I see the big smile and surprised look on the faces of our clients, I realize that the “stress” was worth it after all. That’s one of the things that keeps me going. My husband also always has the right things to say to me whenever I feel very overwhelmed with work.
Meet our Mumpreneur of the week : Temi Ajibewa, TheMillionaireHousewife
WHAT DO YOU THINK ARE The ESSENTIAL SKILLS FOR WOMEN TO START BUSINESS IN NIGERIA?
- MORENIKE MOLEHIN: Irrespective of one’s gender, being an entrepreneur comes with its benefits and challenges. As a female entrepreneur, I believe I am advantaged because of the way God has designed us. We can rise to the challenge of multitasking and this is amazing especially because the responsibility of managing a family cannot be neglected for managing one’s business. But in all honesty, I believe that whether you are male or female, if you are passionate about what you do, sooner or later you will stand out.
HOW PROFITABLE IS RUNNING YOUR KIND OF BUSINESS?
- MORENIKE MOLEHIN: Profitable I must say but it didn’t start the first year for me. I am grateful for how much we have achieved in this short while and can’t wait to see what the future holds.
DO YOU THINK BEING A MUM CONTRIBUTES TO YOUR SUCCESS IN BUSINESS?
- MORENIKE MOLEHIN: Ohh yes, definitely. My kind of job requires lots of doing a lot of things at a time, meaning having the ability to multi-task. Asides that, you need patience, tolerance, courage, discipline, selflessness, efficient, the list is endless. This are the qualities needed both on the homefront and work front..lol.
HOW DO YOU MANAGE FAMILY WITH RUNNING YOUR OWN BUSINESS?
- MORENIKE MOLEHIN: Yes, I do. Not the easiest of things to do but I am graced by the Holy Spirit, my helper.
Please follow her on Instagram @morenikemolehin @oakandteak
if you’d like to be featured as mumpreneur of the week on Motherhoodng.com, send us a mail at [email protected]